Reginald Ponder

Reginald Ponder
Tomatometer-approved critic
Reginald Ponder, The Reel Critic, is a national film critic who loves movies and analyzes all aspects of the film industry through a multi-cultural lens. He is passionate about sharing his critiques to ignite dialogue about society, race, culture and power. Reggie is member of the African American Film Critics Association & resident film critic for Chicago's 91.1 FM/Vocalo; A frequent guest Illinois Public Radio on Wisconsin Public Radio's Central Time & Illinois Public Radio's The 21st Show. For the last 10 years he has been the film critic for the American Black Film Festival (ABFF) and its Red Carpet Host. Reggie is the heart and voice of two radio segments, The 511 & Reggie's Movie Update, both of which have aired on numerous radio stations in the Midwest. Reginald has written extensively about film in publications such as N'Digo Magapaper in Chicago (4 yrs), AOL Black Voices (4 yrs), & The Root He is currently working on a book about Blacks in Movies in Pre-Post-Racial America. Education: Princeton University & University of Chicago's Booth School of Business. Online:, Twitter @TheReelCritic & FB @ReggieTheReelCritic

Movie Reviews Only

T-Meter Title | Year
2.5/4 77% Bad Boys for Life (2020) Bad Boys For Life is fun and a crowd pleaser. The new characters inject some needed freshness into the franchise. Smith and Lawrence hold it down, however, 17 years later feels a bit dated. Worth the ride but I want to pay half-fare. What You Gonna Do? - EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 28, 2020
3.5/4 83% Just Mercy (2020) Just Mercy provides a compelling argument for seeking real justice. It shows us that everyone isn't about what is right but what is expedient and this has cost us lives and the destruction of families. Brian Stevenson-a selfless man doing life-saving work - EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 28, 2020
3.5/4 82% Queen & Slim (2019) Queen and Slim is a provocative and exhilarating ride down the road of police Brutality and the relationship between the police and Black community. You might ask if Queen and Slim hold court but you won't ask if they hold your attention. 3.5 reels - EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 7, 2019
3/4 51% The Sun Is Also a Star (2019) The Sun Is Also A Star is a sweet & interesting love story which requires a bit of a romantic heart. Yara Shahidi & Charles Melton have a chemistry that makes this endearing, funny and hopeful. Enough love to fill plot potholes plus a doubting heart. - EDIT
Read More | Posted May 17, 2019
3/4 90% John Wick: Chapter 3 - Parabellum (2019) The wick has been lit on both ends & it is getting hot! A non-stop action thriller that has so many kills that will surprise or just make you cheer. Reeves delivers Thrills, Kills and Chills! - EDIT
Read More | Posted May 17, 2019
4/4 94% Avengers: Endgame (2019) You will come for the characters & Story, get caught up in their journey, get excited about the action & leave with uncontained satisfaction. A laugh, a tear a cheer. A cinematic Marvel & the crown jewel of the Universe. A Must See! four out of 4 reels - EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 26, 2019
3/4 61% Breakthrough (2019) Breakthrough is about more than faith. A universal film that combines hope, love, community and God to inspire, reflect and rejoice. This might not be a breakout film but might help others have a breakthrough. - EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 20, 2019
3/4 47% Little (2019) Little had big laughs, a little star with big presence, an important lesson mixed with a little dab of warmth and heart. What Little lacks in story telling, heart tugging & depth is compensated for in the command Marsai Martin has over this film. Funny! - EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 13, 2019
2/4 46% Dumbo (2019) This reincarnation of a Disney classic has to find a way to make Dumbo as exciting as its predecessor while addressing the backlash regarding circuses and animals in captivity. While Dumbo does fly, the movie doesn't soar. - EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 31, 2019
3/4 100% Where's Daddy? (2018) An important examination of how Black Men are treated regarding child support by the courts. It will make you think, talk & possibly take action to even the playing field. No child should have to ask Where's Daddy? - EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 31, 2019
3.5/4 93% Us (2019) US is another Jordan Peele film with some important messages wrapped in horror and gore. If you don't leave fearing yourself you will leave knowing that the worst gang is a doppelgäng. Deliberate, Disturbing, Deserving. - EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 22, 2019
3.5/4 53% Five Feet Apart (2019) Five Feet Apart gives us a love story with heart. While some of it can be telegraphed, the writers give us insight into cystic fibrosis & Haley Lu Richardson with Cole Sprouse bring enough authenticity making it worth the risk of getting a little closer - EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 16, 2019
3/4 78% Captain Marvel (2019) Brie Larson is truly the Captain of this ship. And while this is a worthy voyage the story falls short of MARVEL-ous. - EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 10, 2019
4/4 79% Mary Poppins Returns (2018) Mary Poppins Returns in great fashion. I'm using words I don't even use in a review: delightful, wonderful, marvelous, stupendous, Supercalifragilistic. I love the songs, animation, acting and magic. A Must See!! - EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 28, 2018
4/4 95% If Beale Street Could Talk (2019) If Beal Street Could Talk it would tell you that love lives in the Black community, hope survives in those relationships, justice evades righteousness and family still bonds a people. A Must See, 4 Reels - EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 21, 2018
3.5/4 97% Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (2018) Spiderman: Into The Spider-verse is a different Marvel offering that will satisfy that superhero craving while addressing superhero fatigue. An animation masterpiece where the visual presentation look so good, so fun & invites you into the spider-verse. - EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 14, 2018